Tuesday 15 October 2019

Nigel Farage to face off with Alastair Campbell in Late Late Show London special Brexit debate

Graham Norton, Imelda May, Mick McCarthy, Barry McGuigan and Finbar Furey will also appear

Ryan Tubridy in London. PIC: Ryan Tubridy/Instagram
Ryan Tubridy in London. PIC: Ryan Tubridy/Instagram

Sean O'Grady

Nigel Farage is due to appear on tomorrow night's London special of The Late Late Show, the Herald has learned.

The former Ukip leader (54)is expected to face off against broadcaster and former Tony Blair spokesman Alastair Campbell in a Brexit debate.

"Brexit will play a role in the London special so it makes sense that RTE wanted to get the man who spearheaded it," a source said.

"Mr Farage is known for his strong opinions and they're banking on him making for some entertaining TV."

Nigel Farage pictured speaking at an Irexit conference hosted in RDS. Picture: Frank Mc Grath
Nigel Farage pictured speaking at an Irexit conference hosted in RDS. Picture: Frank Mc Grath

It is understood there will be two other panel members present for the discussion, which will last about 20 minutes.

Farage resigned as leader of Ukip, the United Kingdom Independence Party, in July 2016 soon after the referendum to leave the EU passed.

Alistair Campbell
Alistair Campbell

An MEP since 1999, Farage, who stood seven times unsuccessfully for election to the House of Commons, said then that he never wanted to be a "career politician".

He has since become vice chairman of the Leave Means Leave pressure group, which campaigns and lobbies for Britain's exit from the EU.

He was last on The Late Late Show in 2015, discussing Ukip's place in British politics. He sparked controversy last year when he addressed the far-right AfD party in Germany, which talks openly of fighting "an invasion of foreigners". He encouraged the AfD to be "bold" in challenging the status quo and received a standing ovation.

Also on the show tomorrow will be a joint interview with football manager Mick McCarthy and former boxer Barry McGuigan.  Graham Norton, whose own pre-recorded entertainment show airs on Friday nights on the BBC, will also feature in the line-up as will Imelda May and Finbar Furey.

There will be a performance to close the show by a supergroup whose members include Andrea and Caroline Corr, Paddy Moloney of The Chieftains and John Sheahan of The Dubliners.

The show will take place in the Central Hall in Westminster with a live audience of 1,200 people.

Host Ryan Tubridy has now been the face of the show for a decade, but admitted he knows it won't be a job he will have forever.

"I'm there as long as they'll have me. It's not a safe job. It's not a job for life. I'm not arrogant enough to think that it is," he said.

"With that in mind, you always have to be wary. I think about it, but not too long. I've plenty of ideas and plenty of places to go in my head."

The Dubliner admitted he never watches himself back on camera.

"It's a weird thing but I just am not into looking at myself. I've seen the interview, in the sense that I've done it," he said.

"Contrary to all accusations of excessive vanity, there's only so much of me I can take."

The Late Late Show is on RTE One Friday, 9.35pm

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